'Most ambitious' Hay Festival Cartagena to star Adichie, Smith and Sands

'Most ambitious' Hay Festival Cartagena to star Adichie, Smith and Sands

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Zadie Smith and Philippe Sands are among the literary heavyweights leading Hay Festival Cartagena 2019's line-up in its "most ambitious year yet".

The festival, scheduled for 31st January - 3rd February next year, boasts internationally acclaimed writers, journalists and performers, including Nobel Prize-winners, as part of a programme encompassing 130 speakers in 150 events over four days.

Ngozi Adichie will be reflecting on the relationship between journalism and fiction while Zadie Smith will talk about her latest work Feel Free (Hamish Hamilton). Lawyer Sands is meanwhile going to be debating the impact of #MeToo with experts, activists and authors Brigitte Baptiste, Lydia Cacho, Diamela Eltit, Karmele Jaio and Morten Strøksnes, and discussing "globalisation in crisis" in a panel featuring US academic Sarah Churchwell and the director general of the New York Times, Mark Thompson.

Also joining Ngozi Adichie, Smith and Sands on the roster are internationally acclaimed writers including Canadian authors Madeleine Thien and Kim Thúy, whose novels respectively were shortlisted for 2017's Man Booker Prize and won the Governor General's Literary Award in 2010, Japanese writer Yōko Tawada, Spanish poets Luna Miguel and Manuel Vilas, Colombian novelists Juan Gabriel Vásquez and Laura Restrepo, Mexican writer Álvaro Enrigue and Romanian poet, novelist and essayist Mircea Cartarescu. Nobel Peace Prize-winner Shirin Ebadi, who became the first Muslim woman and first Iranian person to receive the Nobel Peace Prize in 2003, is also appearing to present her autobiography, Until We Are Free.

Alma Guillermoprieto will be in conversation about her work reporting on drug trafficking and femicides, and Colombian economist, writer and engineer Alejandro Gaviria will present Hoy es siempre todavía, his moving story of battling lymphoma.

Other issues under the spotlight include contemporary Colombia, press freedom in Latin America, nature and the climate crisis, and global health, the latter inspiring an appearance from the co-founder of Doctors Without Borders Jean-Christophe Rufin.

Hay Festivalito for younger readers offers conversations and readings from "stars of children’s literature", including Pilar Lozano, Celso Román, and Irene Vasco. 

The full programme can be viewed at hayfestival.org/cartagena Tickets go on general sale here on Friday 7th December 2018.

Cristina Fuentes La Roche, international director of Hay Festival, said: "Hay Festival Cartagena sets the tone for our most ambitious year yet with a programme led by some of the world’s greatest living storytellers. We’re taking on some of the biggest questions of our time and exploring new ways to meet the challenges ahead. It will be a party, too, with music and laughter. Since before Marquez and to the present, Cartagena is a city to dream in; join us."